22. Hickory Dickory Dock - Agatha Christie
23. The Runaway Queen (The Bane Chronicles #2) - Cassandra Clare (Short Story)
24. The Grimoire of the Lamb (The Iron Druid Chronicles #0.4) - Kevin Hearne (Short Story)
Hickory Dickory Dock did not disappoint. I liked the varying cast of characters in this one. It's typical for Christie to have many characters who have motive, means and opportunity to be the killer and it's fun trying to figure it out as you go along. Once again, it was a bit surprising to finally see who did it. I was not expecting that particular reveal but it made for a great trip. I want to reread it now with the knowledge of who the killer is to see how all the pieces fall into place along the way.
I went into The Runaway Queen with low expectations considering the disappointment that was What Really Happened in Peru. This story had a Magnus Bane that was a little more familiar in terms of who we know him to be in The Mortal Instruments Series and The Infernal Devices Trilogy. His style and persona come out more in this. I liked that this felt like a more complete glimpse into one of Bane's many life experiences. I like that this story had a more definitive ending than the previous. We meet Magnus, see how and why he gets involved in this particular adventure. We see him keep his word, be the hero and save the queen and see the whole thing fall apart and him escape. I liked this more than the last instalment but it was still lacking in some of the genuine character traits that had endeared me to Magnus in the first place. I'm still waiting for a story that really pops.
This nugget from Kevin Hearne was a nice gap-filler while I wait for Book 6 in The Iron Druid Chronicles series. It didn't advance that plot much considering where in the series it fell, but it was nice to see the relationship between Atticus and Oberon. I hope Hal Hauk (Atticus' daytime lawyer) gets a more prominent role in future books because he is a gem to read. This was a nice glimpse into some of the adventures Atticus and Oberon get into when their lives aren't otherwise threatened by gods.
25.Wedding Night: A Novel - Sophie Kinsella
26. Vampires, Scones and Edmund Herondale (The Bane Chronicles #3) - Cassandra Clare
27. The Age of Innocence - Edith Wharton
28. Hunted (The Iron Druid Chronicles #6) - Kevin Hearne
Sophie Kinsella is one of my favourite authors. I love that her stories tend to just be based on interactions and miscommunications in a similar vein to Jane Austen. Just simple stories with issues the characters have to worth through. I've liked and disliked different books of hers in the past but this was enjoyable. This story was a bit different from her typical template in that we followed two leading ladies throughout the story rather than one as they work their way through the mess that is their life. I love that the characters were completely different. It made it interesting to see how they each reacted differently to the same situations. There was humour, as normal for Kinsella, and at points I was laughing out loud at the hijinks. Kinella has a habit of sometimes not really ending a story even when it finishes. Sometimes the story is just left hanging. This was not the case here. I felt content to leave the characters when their tale ended. There were no unanswered questions, just a complete ending. This was definitely a good chick-lit read.
Again, we have more Magnus Bane. This story was better than the last but still not brilliant. In this we see how the relationship with Camille Belcourt begins we see Magnus get more affiliated with the Shadowhunters and see him somewhat redefine himself in relation to them. While it was a good story that gave a distinct ending, it still was not the story I was expecting. Maybe I need to alter my expectations of Clare. I feel like a series that was supposed to celebrate arguably the most popular character from her writing may in fact be killing him slowly. I hope the other stories in the series come to the rescue.
I'm not sure I have anything complimentary to say about The Age of Innocence. It was a good book, I suppose, but it felt to much like school work. It felt more like reading words on a page than getting immersed in a new world. I didn't become attached to any of the characters. I didn't feel endeared to anyone and I kept waiting for something to happen. The only remotely genuine characters (Ellen, Medora and Beaufort) were the ones of whom all the other characters spoke ill. I almost wanted the book to turn into a zombie-apocalypse book halfway through and have everyone get slaughtered. I've never been so happy to end a book in all my life. Archer is spineless and his wife May is a hypocrite. They really deserve each other and would do well to keep other people out of their lives.
Hunted was exhilarating. Who doesn't love a good chase? I laughed, cried, laughed again. It was just awesome. I got many of my questions from previous books answered and got a whole new set of questions to ponder. I love that the relationship between Atticus and Granuaile is growing and she's proving herself as a competent companion. In the interest of not revealing spoilers, I won't say much beyond that the book was brilliant, there is so much to look forward to in future books and I can't wait for the new questions to be answered.
Next book: Sense and Sensibility - Jane Austen